Police Ombudsman report into Marian Beattie murder in final stages

For 50 years Marian Beattie's murderer has walked free.

As the family prepare to mark the 50th anniversary of her death they have told UTV they will not stop until her killer is found.

The 18-year-old from Portadown was found brutally murdered at the bottom of a quarry outside Aughnacloy in Co Tyrone on 31 March 1973.

Marian's brother Isadore Beattie said: "When I had to go and identify Marian at the morgue a friend warned me what you're going to see you'll take that to your grave'.

Last year UTV revealed the Police Ombudsman had found failings in the original police investigation.

Something the family always believed.

A year on and the full report has not been made public.

In statement the Police Ombudsman said it has given careful consideration to the outcome of the investigation into the circumstances surrounding the murder and the report "is now in its final stages".

"The Ombudsman hopes to meet with Marian’s family in the coming weeks to communicate her findings," it said.

No-one has ever been convicted of Marian's murder.

The 18 year old was found murdered at the bottom of this quarry outside Aughnacloy in Co Tyrone on 31 March 1973.

Her brother Gerard believes her killer has been protected.

"The people at the dance knew who the person was Marian went outside with and I don't know how you can sit in your house with your conscience.

"It's 50 years, all we want is for you to go to the police."

The PSNI added: "The investigation into the murder of Marian Beattie remains open and we remain committed to bringing to justice those responsible for her murder.

"We recognise the hurt and pain that Marian’s murder continues to cause the family and as such we are resolved to investigating credible lines of enquiry when they are identified."

Detectives in the Legacy Investigation Branch (LIB) carried out focused enquiries on information provided by Marian’s family to assess their value to the investigation in 2021 which were completed in early 2022. 

Marian’s murder remains within the caseload of LIB for a further full review in accordance with the Case Sequencing Model. 

Police continue to appeal to anyone with any information that can assist their investigation to contact detectives in Investigation Branch on 101. Alternatively, information can be given to the Crimestoppers charity anonymously on 0800 555 111.

In a family statement Marian's family have also appealed for help.

"As recent events have shown, violent attacks and abuse towards women are prevalent features even in today’s society.

"It is up to all of us to effect significant change and as a family we hold onto hope, even 50 years later, that Marian’s murderer will be brought to justice.

"We are now calling on the Chief Constable Simon Byrne to meet with our family and to discuss with us how Marian’s case can be progressed.

"After 50 years as a family we deserve answers to why Marian’s murder investigation was flawed from day one and what steps will now be taken to rectify this.

"If Marian could speak to you all today we believe she would say that her soul is now in The Lords hands but justice for her murder is in all of our hands."

memorial event for Marian will be held on Saturday 1 April at 2.30pm in Aughnacloy at the murder scene.

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